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Florida Supreme Court, Amendment 1 (1902)

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The Florida Supreme Court Amendment was a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment in Florida which was approved on the ballot on November 4, 1902.

This amendment modified Article V of the Florida Constitution in relation to the number of Supreme Court Justices and court operations.[1]

Election results

Florida Amendment 1 (1902)
Approveda Yes 5,515 63.67%

Election results via: Report of the Secretary of State of the State of Florida (1901-1902)

Text of measure

The language that appeared on the ballot:

Constitutional Amendment – Section 2, Article 5—Increasing number Justices Supreme Court.[2][3]
Constitutional Amendment – Section 4, Article 5—Relating to method of transacting business by Supreme Court.[2][3]

Note: The sample ballot found lists this measure as two separate questions, but the measure came from the same legislative resolution and the results from the Secretary of State are combined.

Constitutional changes

Section 2. The Supreme Court shall consist of three Justices, except as hereinafter provided, who shall be elected by the qualified electors of the State at the time and places of voting for members of the Legislature, and shall hold their office for the term of six years, except those first elected, one of whom, to be designated by lot in such manner as they may determine, shall hold his office for two years; another, to be designated in like manner, for four years; and the third for six years, so that one shall be elected every two years after the first election. The Chief Justice shall be designated by lot by said Justices, and shall be such during his term of office. The first election for said Justices shall take place at the first election for members of the Legislature after the ratification of this Constitution, and their term of office shall begin on the first Tuesday after the first Monday after their election.

Upon ratification of this amendment to the Constitution, the Governor, by and with the consent of the Senate, shall appoint three more Justices of the Supreme Court, each of whom shall have the same powers and shall receive the same compensation as each of the other Justices of the Supreme Court, and each of the Justices so appointed shall hold office until the first Tuesday after the first Monday of June in the year 1905, and may further hold office until his successor shall be elected and qualified, if it shall be so provided by law. For the year 1905 and for the subsequent years the Legislature may provide by law for the election of such number of Justices of the Supreme Court as it may determine, and prescribe their terms of office, not to exceed six years; Provided, That the number of Justices of the Supreme Court holding office at the same time shall not be less than three, and shall not be greater than six, and provided that no Justice of the Supreme Court can by such an act of the Legislature be deprived of his office during the term for which he was elected.

Section 4. The majority of the Justices of the Supreme Court shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of all business. But when there shall be six Justices of the Supreme Court, the Court may hear and determine cases and exercise any of its powers when sitting either in a body or in two divisions, under such regulations as may be prescribed by law or by the rules of said Court not inconsistent therewith. The concurrence of a majority of the members of the Court sitting in any cause wherein the Court shall sit as one body shall be necessary to a decision; and when any member of a division of the Court shall dissent from the majority of such division on any question, such question shall be submitted to the Court sitting in a body. The number of terms of the Supreme Court and the time of holding the same shall be regulated by law. All terms shall be held at the capital of the State.[1]

Path to the ballot

  • The amendment was placed on the ballot by Joint Resolution 1 of 1901.
  • The amendment was approved for the ballot on May 30, 1901.[1]

See also

Suggest a link

External links


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Florida Constitution Revision Commission, "Amendments, Election of 11-4-02"
  2. 2.0 2.1 The Daytona Gazette-News, "Instructions To Voters," November 1, 1902
  3. 3.0 3.1 Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.